Unlike this year, when the top player in the country was unanimous (Rashan Gary), coming into 2017, there seems to be a difference of opinion. BUT WE HAVE SPECTACULAR NEWS!There are two #1 players, and they are both early commitments to the University of Alabama.
Scout’s #1 is Najee Harris, a 6’1” 217 running back with a 2.66 40 yard dash from Antioch, California. He committed to UA in April of last year while on a visit for A Day. More than one analyst has compared him to Todd Gurley.
“He was recently named State Player of the Year by CalHiSports.com, the first time the honor went to a non-senior since 1986. He rushed for 2,744 yards and scored 39 touchdowns, plus had 33 two-point conversions runs (stats courtesy: CalHiSports).
When you look at his size and running style, you can see a lot of Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley in his game. He has grown significantly in the last year and now looks closer to 6-2, 215 pounds, while adding speed and wiggle.”
Harris will be an easy one to root for, Tide fans. The youngest to four older brothers, Najee had a turbulent home life to say the least; his siblings and he often found themselves in homeless shelters and hotels with their single mother, Tianna Hicks. But as so many before him have, Najee found his “salvation” in football at Antioch H.S., where he is projected to graduate a semester early.
Though he is committed to The University, he has also commented that he “is open to anybody,” and with offers from every Pac12 and Southeastern Conference school, it would be hard to blame him for keeping his options open.
Both ESPN and 24/7 Sports herald Dylan Moses, a Baton Rouge native running back and linebacker now playing at IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL, as their top prospect for 2017. While Moses is committed to the Tide, like Harris, he is open to other options….Michigan, in particular. AND WOULDN’T YOU KNOW IT BUT MICHIGAN’S JIM HARBAUGH PLANS TO SPEND ONE OF HIS INFAMOUS CAMPS AT IMG, WHERE MOSES GOES TO SCHOOL. Shocking, isn’t it?
Nevertheless, Moses told ESPN, “Alabama is still my leader because they are more structured. They have very good discipline over there so they get their kids doing what they have to do. I like their strength program, coach [Scott] Cochran, coach [Nick] Saban. It’s just a really great coaching staff over there and I just really feel comfortable there.”
We all know how difficult it can be to keep a 17 year old’s attention, even when there aren’t others vying for it. Early commitments tend to sway to and fro with the whim of the kid and, some would say, the bagman. Allegedly. Nevertheless, if the Bama coaching staff can keep both Moses and Harris, Crootmas 2017 could be (another) one for the ages.
Roll Tide, Heroes!